Turdiform – a bird of the family Turdidae, which includes thrushes and larks; having the form of a lark.
1. Who said: Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face.?
2. What is the name for the French slow-cooked casserole which contains meat and beans?
3. It’s glace in French; ghiaccio in Italian, hielo in Spanish and tio in Maori, what is it in English?
4. What is the winter Olympic sport of skeleton?
5. What’s your favourite winter warmer of the culinary kind?
The Flag Consideration Panel is inviting people to upload designs for a new flag.
There are more than 4000 in the gallery already.
This one is Stars and Silver Ferns by Steve Juergens:
Health researchers have suggested long-term contraception be provided for all teenage girls before they become sexually active:
In an article in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Dr Neil Pickering and Dr Lynley Anderson from the university’s Bioethics Centre and Dr Helen Paterson from its Department of Women’s and Children’s Health say teen pregnancy places significant costs on the individual and society, and is associated with higher perinatal mortality.
“We also know the children of teen pregnancies do poorly in statistics related to poverty, imprisonment and teen pregnancy.
“In a worryingly large number of cases, pregnancy in the teenage years is bad for the teenager, is bad for the child of the teenager and it is bad for both of them during the whole pregnancy. Obviously that also impacts on society.”
That isn’t controversial but the suggested solution is:
Dr Paterson says teenage pregnancy and abortion rates in New Zealand have improved recently, possibly since the LARC (long-acting reversible contraceptive) Jadelle became funded by Pharmac five years ago.
“If you use withdrawal as a method, pregnancy rates are 22 per cent per annum. If you use condoms it is 18 per cent, if you use the pill it is 9 per cent, and if you use a LARC it is 0.5 per cent.”
Dr Pickering says there is a good case for making it an opt-out programme which provides adolescents with the opportunity to have a LARC, rather than having to go and seek care.
“For a programme to be effective you need to get as many people involved as possible and an opt-out programme seems to be more effective. You still get the right to say no and in terms of justice it treats everybody the same.”
There is an alternative view:
. . . Family Planning chief executive Jackie Edmond says most young women aren’t having sex before they turn 16.
“We’re overkilling it putting implants in people who aren’t intending to or aren’t having sex,” she told NZ Newswire. . .
Family Planning is much more interested in ensuring there are good services and contraceptive options available to young women, Ms Edmond said. . .
The conversation around contraception also needs to extend to the role of young men.
“They need information around choices and access to services,” Ms Edmond said.
“It’s not just girls who are having to manage (fertility).” . . .
And it’s not just pregnancy that is the only unwanted consequence of sex.
LARC might be an effective contraceptive but it would not protect people from sexually transmitted diseases nor the emotional trauma that can follow early and casual relationships.
Then there’s the question of ethics in prescribing anything for all young women, most of whom don’t need it.
Health researchers might not be concerned about the moral dimension of this issue but would there not also be a danger of normalising early sexual experience?
Or have we come to a time when legal, moral, or not, that doesn’t matter?
The Ministry for Primary Industries has confirmed the 45,000 sheep and 3,200 cattle, exported to Mexico are now at a holding farm following their 15-day journey from Timaru.
A total of 191 sheep and one cow died – 0.42% and 0.03% respectively of the sheep and cattle in the shipment. This compares favourably with the average mortality of 0.71% in 40 Australian live sheep shipments last year.
MPI’s Director Animal and Animal Products, Matthew Stone, said the exact cause of the deaths is not yet known but, as a matter of course, MPI has required a detailed voyage report by mid-July from the exporter, which will include information from the veterinarian who travelled with the shipment.
“Nothing unexpected happened in terms of the animals’ health and welfare during the voyage,” said Mr Stone.
“The stockmen on board report the sheep had a 10% to 12% weight gain on the 15 day voyage.”
Mexican authorities oversaw the completion of the vessel’s disembarkation process. . .
And SAFE has another story:
Animal advocacy organisation SAFE is appalled that 191 sheep and one cow perished on board a controversial live export shipment to Mexico. The shipment of a reported 45,000 sheep and 3,200 cattle was the largest cargo of animals ever to leave New Zealand.
“192 animals have died and it begs the question, how many more will die on the next stage of their journey?” says SAFE’s executive director, Hans Kriek.
The sheep are being transported by truck for 1000 kilometres in 30-degree temperatures to a farm near Mexico City from where they will be distributed to smaller farms. It was reported that some sheep also died at the feedlots as they waited to board.
There are no reports yet on why the animals died, but it is known that on live export ships a number of animals die from illness or starvation. Some suffer from ‘inanition’ – not recognising the ship food of pellets as food as they were previously used to being on pasture.
When we were in Darwin at All Flex’s PPP conference a couple of weeks ago the preparation of animals for live shipments, which includes conditioning on the feed they will eat at sea, was explained.
Stock are monitored carefully and any not eating enough are culled before they embark and well before there is any danger of starvation.
I am certain that those caring for the sheep in New Zealand would take similar care for both animal welfare and financial reasons.
Although the shipment is purportedly for breeding purposes rather than for slaughter, which is illegal, SAFE says this latest shipment ignores the spirit of the ban on live export since the animals will still eventually be slaughtered in Mexico after they are no longer required for breeding, most likely in conditions that would be deemed cruel and illegal in this country. . .
New Zealand’s meat works are world leading, I don’t know enough to comment on Mexico’s but the sheep and cattle would eventually be slaughtered had they stayed in New Zealand.
Apropos of dying at sea, another fact we learned in Darwin was that the death rate for people on cruise liners is as high as 2.5%.
Weight gain is also common among people on cruises though probably not as high as the 10-12% gain of the stock.
. . . Identifying leadership is an art and a science. There many who may claim to possess the traits of a leader, but few who have the actual ability to lead. It is a unique mix of empathy and confidence; the ability to know yourself and understand others. A leader acts with courage in spite of fear. A leader steps up to the plate when they sense uncertainty in others. They call it as it is when no one else has the guts. . . Kevin Roberts